Allentown News

Published on July 19th, 2017

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St. Luke’s University Health Network has been named among the “Most Wired” health care institutions in the nation by the American Hospital Association

‘Most Wired’ Hospitals Use Technology to Partner with Patients on Health

St. Luke’s University Health Network has been named among the “Most Wired” health care institutions in the nation by the American Hospital Association.

The recognition comes on the heels of HIMSS Analytics’ honoring St. Luke’s University Health Network with its Stage 7 designation, the highest recognition for electronic medical record adoption. St. Luke’s is the first network in Lehigh Valley to earn the prestigious designation at all of its hospitals, including the St. Luke’s Warren Campus, which is the first hospital in New Jersey to achieve Stage 7.

Nationwide, technology is making it easier for patients and providers to interact, thus improving communication, safety and patient-provider relationships. New tools are helping patients become more actively involved in their care and maintaining their health, according to results of the 19th Annual Health Care’s Most Wired survey, released this week by the American Hospital Association’s (AHA) Health Forum.

According to the survey, Most Wired hospitals such as St. Luke’s are using smart phones, telehealth and remote monitoring to create more ways for patients to access health care services and capture health information. This year’s results show:

76 percent offer secure messaging with clinicians on mobile devices.

  • When patients need ongoing monitoring at home, 74 percent use secure e-mails for patients and families to keep in touch with the care team.
  • 68 percent simplify prescription renewals by letting patients make requests on mobile devices.
  • 62 percent add data reported by patients to the electronic health record to get a better picture of what is going on with the patient.
  • Nearly half of the hospitals are using telehealth to provide behavioral health services to more patients.
  • 40 percent offer virtual physician visits.
  • More than 40 percent provide real-time care management services to patients at home for diabetes and congestive heart failure.

“St. Luke’s has been working on the goal of ‘easy access now’ for all patients, which encompasses all of the trends above. We are reaching our patients in ways we never thought of before, from the ability to make appointments via your cell phone to implementing Epic Ambulatory, making our Network completely integrated with shared patient data,” Chad Brisendine, St. Luke’s Chief Information Officer, said.

The Most Wired and HIMSS Stage 7 recognitions “show our complete dedication to using innovative technology for the benefit of our patients,” Brisendine said.

Innovation in patient care embraces emerging technologies and underscores the need for secure patient information exchange.

“The Most Wired hospitals are using every available technology option to create more ways to reach their patients in order to provide access to care,” said AHA President and CEO Rick Pollack. “They are transforming care delivery, investing in new delivery models in order to improve quality, provide access and control costs.”

Hospitals have increased their use of sophisticated IT monitoring systems to detect patient privacy breaches, monitor for malicious activities or policy violations and produce real-time analysis of security alerts.

  • 97 percent use intrusion detection systems.
  • 96 percent perform data access audits.
  • Nearly 90 percent run targeted phishing exercises to teach employees to question suspicious emails.

Most Wired hospitals are transforming care delivery with knowledge gained from data and analytics. They are investing in analytics to support new delivery models and effective decision-making and training clinicians on how to use analytics to improve quality, provide access and control costs.

  • 82 percent analyze retrospective clinical and administrative data to identify areas for improving quality and reducing the cost of care.
  • Three-quarters use sophisticated analytics such as predictive modeling and data to improve decision-making.
  • Nearly 70 percent interface electronic health record data with population health tools for care management.
  • More than 70 percent are providing data analytic tools training to physicians and nurses.
  • 45 percent initiate a patient pathway using health IT to follow a care plan.
  • Nearly 40 percent deliver quality metrics to physicians at the point-of-care.
  • 32 percent have tools for real-time patient identification and tracking for value-based care conditions, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

HealthCare’s Most Wired® survey, conducted between Jan. 15 and March 15, 2017, is published annually by Health & Hospitals Networks (H&HN). The 2017 Most Wired® survey and benchmarking study is a leading industry barometer measuring information technology (IT) use and adoption among hospitals nationwide. The survey of 698 participants, representing an estimated 2,158 hospitals — more than 39 percent of all hospitals in the U.S. — examines how organizations are leveraging IT to improve performance for value-based health care in the areas of infrastructure, business and administrative management; quality and safety; and clinical integration.

Detailed results of the survey and study can be found in the July issue of H&HN. For a full list of winners, visit www.hhnmag.com.

About the Most Wired Survey

The 2017 Most Wired Survey is conducted in cooperation with the American Hospital Association and Clearwater Compliance, LLC.

About the American Hospital Association

The AHA is a not-for-profit association of health care provider organizations and individuals that are committed to the improvement of health in their communities. The AHA is the national advocate for its members, which include nearly 5,000 hospitals, health care systems, networks and other providers of care. Founded in 1898, the AHA provides education for health care leaders and is a source of information on health care issues and trends. For more information, visit www.aha.org.

About Health Forum

Health Forum is a strategic business enterprise of the American Hospital Association, creatively partnering to develop and deliver essential information and innovative services to help health care leaders achieve organizational performance excellence and sustainability. For more information, visit www.healthforum.com.

About HIMSS

HIMSS Analytics, a subsidiary of the Health Information Management Systems Society, is a healthcare research and advisory firm for healthcare organizations and governments worldwide.


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